Notice of Special Interest: Administrative Supplements to Promote and Expand into the Research and Development of Medical Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

January 6, 2020

First Available Due Date:
February 03, 2020
Expiration Date:
August 04, 2020

Related Announcements



Issued by

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

National Eye Institute (NEI)

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)


The NIH is inviting administrative supplement applications from existing awards that are not currently focused on developing medical countermeasures (MCMs) against chemical threats to allow them to expand their research focus into this critical field. Supplemental funding includes all direct costs as well as associated facilities and administrative costs. The supplement project can start at any time during the budget period but must end on the last day of the budget period. The parent award may not be in terminal no-cost extension.

Application budgets are limited to no more than the amount of the current award or $125,000 total costs (whichever is lower) and must reflect the actual needs of the proposed project.

Scope of Interest

The overall goal of the NIH Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats (CounterACT) program is to support research and development of therapeutics that can reduce mortality and morbidity in the event of the release of chemical threat agents. Chemical threat agents are toxic compounds that could be released by a deliberate terrorist attack against civilians, or by accidental or natural disaster causing mass casualties. These include chemical warfare agents (e.g., sarin, chlorine, sulfur mustard), toxic industrial chemicals (e.g., cyanide, hydrogen sulfide, and phosgene), pesticides (e.g., parathion, brodifacoum), pharmaceutical-based agents (e.g., opioids) and other chemicals. If research related to opioid threats is being proposed, see NOT-NS-18-019 for a description of research supported by the NIH CounterACT program.

The scope of research that will be supported by this NOSI should be consistent with the following currently published funding opportunity announcements, PAR-18-721, PAR-19-030, and PAR-19-040, including basic translational research through preclinical studies. To view a list of currently funded projects, please visit our webpage, CounterACT Research Network and Funded Investigators.

Examples of topics and chemical agents of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Pulmonary Agents (Chlorine and Phosgene): Development of MCMs to prevent and treat lung damage (including pulmonary edema and fibrosis) resulting after exposure
  • Pharmaceutical-based Agents (Synthetic Opioids): Development of MCMs to treat life-threatening respiratory depression caused by opioid intoxication. These post-exposure treatments should be quick-acting and effective against a variety of opioids, e.g., fentanyl, carfentanil. See NOT-NS-18-019 for more details
  • Vesicants (Sulfur Mustard and Lewisite): Development of MCMs that mitigate the acute and/or long-term injuries resulting from exposure of the skin, eyes, and mucous membranes to vesicating agents. Specific areas of interest include treating corneal neovascularization, fibrosis, and mustard gas keratopathy.
  • Cellular Respiration/Blood Agents (Cyanide): Development of MCMs to treat acute poisoning. Antidotes should be rapidly effective and easily administered by first responders
  • Nerve Agents and Organophosphorus (OP) Pesticides: Development of MCMs to treat seizures either before or after they become refractory to treatment with benzodiazepines or therapeutics that promote neuronal survival and other persistent effects after seizure termination. See the federal monograph, Sarin: Potential Long-term Neurological Effects.

There are other chemicals of interest in addition to those listed above, Investigators planning to submit an application in response to this NOSI are strongly advised to contact and discuss their proposed research/aims with the Program Officer of their parent award and the CounterACT Program Officer (listed below) most relevant to the supplement project well in advance of the receipt deadline to determine responsiveness, programmatic interest, and relevance. Applications that propose research on chemical threats that are not of interest to the program will not be considered for funding.

Application and Submission Information

Applications for this initiative must be submitted using the following opportunity or its subsequent reissued equivalent.

  • PA-18-591 - Administrative Supplements to Existing NIH Grants and Cooperative Agreements (Parent Admin Supp Clinical Trial Optional)

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and PA-18-591 must be followed, with the following additions

Research Strategy

As part of the application, include an abstract of the proposed research that shows the relevance to developing chemical medical countermeasures. Summarize the scope of the parent and supplemental projects and describe the proposed aims and research strategy for the new study. Clearly state how the supplemental efforts fit into the scope of the parent grant. Applicants to the program are urged to consider and directly address elements of rigor and reproducibility as described in NOT-OD-15-103 in their experimental design.

Administrative Evaluation Criteria

  • Is the proposed supplemental project and outcomes relevant to the NIH CounterACT program mission and goals?
  • Is the work proposed within scope of the active parent award?
  • Does the proposed research/scientific team possess the expertise to conduct and achieve the goals of the supplemental study?
  • Does the supplemental proposal include a well-described, rigorous scientific approach?
  • Will the project yield significant preliminary data in support of more advanced drug discovery and development efforts?
  • Is the scope and budget reasonable for the proposed studies

Letters of Support

Applicants must include a letter from appropriate institutional biosafety officials indicating that studies are deemed safe for research personnel and the environment. A formal letter of support must also be provided for all newly proposed collaborative, consultative, and/or contract arrangements.

  • Application Due Date(s) February 3, 2020, April 1, 2020, June 1, 2020, and August 3, 2020, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization.
  • For funding consideration, applicants must include NOT-NS-20-030 (without quotation marks) in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4b) of the SF424 R&R form. Applications without this information in box 4b will not be considered for this initiative.
  • Requests may be for one year of support only.
  • The Research Strategy section of the application is limited to 6 pages.
  • The process for Streamlined Submissions using the eRA Commons cannot be used for this initiative.
  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to notify the program contact at the Institute supporting the parent award and the CounterACT Program Officer (listed below) most relevant to the supplemental project that a request has been submitted in response to this FOA in order to facilitate efficient processing of the request.
  • The application budget cannot exceed $125,000 in total costs.


Please direct all inquiries related to the overall NIH CounterACT Program, or neurological injury and metabolic/blood research to:

David A. Jett, PhD
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-496-6035

Shardell M. Spriggs, PhD
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-443-8189

For questions related to dermal/vesicant-induced injuries:

Hung Tseng, Ph.D.
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Telephone: 301-594-5032

For questions related to ocular injury research:

Houmam Araj, Ph.D.
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Telephone: 301-451-2020

For questions related to pulmonary injury research:

Srikanth S. Nadadur, Ph.D.
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Telephone: 919-541-5327

For questions related to pharmaceutical based agents:

Kristopher Bough, Ph.D.
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Telephone: 301-443-9800

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